When Bernardino began to work, it remains unknown. His early paintings are made in late Gothic style. Obviously, Luini’s manner changed under the guidance of Leonardo, of whom he was a student. Milan double Benozzo Gozzoli, Luini worked in Milan, Lugano, Saronno and Chiaravalle. According to local tradition, he was a prolific artist. Judging by the fact that he created a huge number of frescoes and paintings, we can conclude that he was the owner of a thriving workshop. After the death of Bernardino, which followed in 1532, his sons, Aurelio and Giovanni Pietro, continued his work.
Education and early work Luini to this day cause a lot of controversy. So, the hypothesis about the young artist's journey to Florence and Rome and about contacts with Raphael, is based only on the fact that R. Longhi attributed to him a copy of The Provisions in the Coffin from Gal. Borghese (Venice, private collection). In addition, the authorship of the picture “Madonna with Saints” (Paris, Jacquemar Andre Museum), dated 1507 and signed by “Bemardinus Mediolanesis”, seems controversial. Only the fresco “Madonna with Angels”, written in the monastery of Chiaravalle in 1512 in the Lombard tradition of Foppa and Bergonion and with features of Leonardo sfumato, is the only exact early work of the artist.
Luini's best works, narrative, with plastic rhythms dating back to Bramantino, were created in Milan - the cycles of frescoes in the Chapel of the Domini ts. San Giorgio al Palazzo (1516), in the chapel of San Giuseppe c. Santa Maria della Pace (now Milan, Pinakothek Brera), at Villa Rabbi alla Pelucca (ibid; Paris, Louvre; Chantilly, Conde Museum), in Palazzo Rabbi in Milan (Berlin, Bode Museum, Washington, Nat. Gal. ), in the oratorio of Greco Milanese (Paris, Louvre) and in the Chapel of Bezozzi, c. San Mauricio (he worked on these paintings until 1530). Along with this, he writes a large series of Madonnas (Paris, the Louvre; St. Petersburg, the State Hermitage Museum; Milan, Pinakothek Brera; London, the Wallace collection; Naples, Capodimonte), thanks to which he became famous, especially in the romantic environment of the XIX century . Leonardian in their iconography, these “Madonnas” are also marked by the influence of Solario. Among the best paintings of the artist can also be called "The Descent from the Cross" (Milan, c. Santa Maria della Pascione), "The Annunciation" (Milan, pinacoteca Brera), "Pietou" (1516, Milan, c. San Giorgio al Palazzo) , "St. Jerome ”(Milan, Poldi-Pezzoli Museum),“ Polyptych ”(1523, Legnano, c. SanMagno),“ Polyptych Torriani ”(formerly Turin, collection of Di Rovasenda, predella - Pasadena, Norton Simon Museum). By the late period of creativity Luini include frescoes in the c. Santa Maria degli Angeli in Lugano (1529-1530) and in c. in Saronno (1525-1532), close to the works of Gaudenzio Ferrari.